TORONTO — Restaurants Canada has released the results of its annual Outlook Survey. The highlights show an industry scratching and clawing to stay afloat and facing adversity at every turn, yet still somehow surviving.
Some of the key highlights of the survey include:
• 75 per cent of table-service restaurants said it would take 12 months or longer to return to profitability. To compare, 60 per cent of quick-service restaurants and 64 per cent of all other respondents said it would take 12 months or longer to return to profitability;
• Roughly half (48 per cent) of respondents are feeling “very” or “somewhat” optimistic about the next 12 months. Quick-service restaurants are the most optimistic about the future with 54 per cent of respondents “very” or “somewhat” optimistic;
• Nearly half of foodservice operators were operating at a loss and another 24 per cent were just breaking even in early April — 41 per cent of quick-service restaurants were operating at a loss in the first week of April 2021 while 19 per cent were earning a profit of two per cent or more. By comparison, 50 per cent of table-service restaurants and 54 per cent of all other foodservice were operating at a loss.
Restaurants that completed the survey said the most- popular changes made were to streamline their menus, amend their hours of operation and offer takeout and delivery, while the biggest challenge for them will be navigating additional government shutdowns over the coming months.
Looking forward, more than six in 10 respondents expect to be “reducing operating costs” and “bringing back/finding new staff” will be the biggest challenges for their business, and nearly half of respondents said they would be raising their menu prices by four per cent or more over the next year.